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215 215 9814

Aegean Islands Travel Guide: Tips for Traveling to the Aegean Islands

April 25, 202310 min read.

Are you planning to travel to the Aegean islands and don't know where to start? In this travel guide, we will take you through the most popular Aegean islands, including Mykonos, Santorini, Naxos, Paros and Crete. At the outset, you should know that the Aegean islands are a popular tourism destination in Greece for those looking to enjoy sun, sea and culture. With their beautiful beaches, ancient ruins and picturesque villages, these islands offer a unique and unforgettable experience for visitors of all ages.

Location of the Aegean Islands

You are probably wondering where the Aegean islands are located. You will find the Aegean Islands in the Aegean Sea, a Mediterranean Sea located between Greece and Turkey. The Aegean archipelago is divided into two parts: the Cyclades islands, located south of the Aegean, and the Dodecanese islands, located east of the Aegean.

Some of the best known islands include Santorini, Mykonos, Crete, Rhodes and Corfu. The Aegean islands are a popular tourist destination due to their beautiful beaches, rich history and culture, delicious food and relaxed atmosphere.

Aegean Islands Map on Google Maps

Mykonos: The Island of Party and Fun

Mykonos is an island that has earned a reputation as one of the most fun destinations in Europe, with a vibrant nightlife and some of the best beaches in the Mediterranean. If you are looking to enjoy partying and entertainment, this is the island for you.

Besides the famous parties, Mykonos also has some of the best restaurants in Greece, where you can try delicious local dishes, such as moussaka and souvlaki. You can also visit the church of Paraportiani, one of the country's most iconic religious structures, as well as the island's Archaeological Museum, which houses a large collection of ancient artifacts.

Image of the coast of Mykonos

Picture of the coast of Mykonos

Source: Photo by Jeet Dhanoa on Unsplash

Santorini: The Most Romantic Island of the Aegean

Santorini is one of the most popular islands in the Aegean, thanks to its breathtaking views and beautiful sunsets. Known for its white and blue houses clinging to volcanic cliffs, this island is a romantic and picturesque place that attracts couples from all over the world.

In addition to its breathtaking views, Santorini also boasts some of the best beaches in Greece, such as Red Beach and Perissa Beach. You can also visit the ancient ruins of Akrotiri, which date back to the Bronze Age and offer a fascinating insight into life in ancient Greece.

Photo of the coast of Santorini at night

Picture of the coast of Santorini at night

Source: Photo by James Ting on Unsplash

Naxos: The Largest Island in the Aegean

Naxos is the largest island in the Aegean and one of the least touristic. Known for its beautiful sandy beaches and picturesque villages, this island is an ideal place for those looking for a quieter and more relaxing experience.

In addition to its beaches, Naxos also boasts some of Greece's most impressive ancient ruins, including the Temple of Demeter and the Gate of Apollo. You can also visit the island's Venetian castle, which dates back to the 13th-century and offers breathtaking views of the Aegean Sea.

Photo of the church of Agios Nikolaos on Naxos

Photo of the church of Agios Nikolaos on Naxos

Source: Zach LeBlanc on Pexels

Paros: the Hidden Jewel of the Aegean

Paros is one of the lesser-known islands in the Aegean, but that doesn't mean it doesn't have a lot to offer. With its picturesque villages and crystal clear beaches, Paros is a hidden gem worth discovering.

Among the most popular attractions in Paros is the village of Naoussa, with its narrow streets and picturesque fishing port. You can also visit the church of Ekatontapyliani, an impressive Byzantine church dating back to the 4th century. In addition, Paros is known for its delicious local cheeses and wines, so you can't miss tasting them during your visit.

Image of chairs facing the sea on the coast of Paros

Picture of chairs facing the sea on the coast of Paros

Source: Photo by Kostas Christodoulias on Unsplash

Crete: Greece's Biggest Island

If you are wondering what is the largest island in Greece, you should know that Crete is the answer. It is one of the most diverse islands in terms of scenery and culture. With its stunning beaches, picturesque villages and rich history, Crete is an island worth exploring.

Among Crete's most popular attractions is the Palace of Knossos, an ancient Minoan palace dating back to the 18th century B.C. You can also visit the city of Chania, with its impressive Venetian harbor and narrow streets lined with stores and restaurants.

In addition, Crete is known for its delicious food and local wines, so be sure to try some of the island's typical dishes, such as dakos or staka.

Image of Crete, nightlife atmosphere, and a goat

Image of Crete, nightlife atmosphere, and a goat

Source: Photo by Albrecht Fietz on Pixabay

Beaches of the Aegean

As we mentioned before, the archipelago of the Aegean Islands is a popular tourist destination around the world, thanks to its warm climate, rich culture and stunning natural beauty. But if there's one thing the Aegean stands out for, it's its beaches.

Among the best beaches in the Aegean is the Red Beach in Santorini. This beach is known for its dramatic red cliffs rising above the white sand and crystal-clear waters of the Aegean Sea. Super Paradise Beach in Mykonos is also one of the most prominent beaches, thanks to its vibrant atmosphere and turquoise waters.

In Crete, Elafonisi Beach is one of the most popular among tourists. This beach features beautiful pink sand and gentle waves, and is ideal for enjoying a relaxing day in the sun. Navagio Beach in Zakynthos, also known as Shipwreck Beach, is another stunning Aegean beach, boasting a beautiful cove of white sand and turquoise waters surrounded by cliffs.

If you are looking for more picturesque beaches, Kleftiko Beach in Milos is an excellent choice. This beach is surrounded by impressive rock formations and cliffs that form natural caves. On the other hand, Perissa Beach in Santorini is another popular Aegean beach, thanks to its crystal-clear waters and black volcanic sand.

In other words, the Aegean Islands offer some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with a wide variety of landscapes and environments to suit all tastes. From quiet and secluded beaches to vibrant and lively beaches, the Aegean has something to offer for all travelers in search of sun, sand and sea.

Whether you're looking for a place to relax and unwind, or a destination to enjoy water sports and outdoor activities, the beaches of the Aegean are an excellent choice.

Gastronomy from the Aegean Islands

If you want to know more about what to eat and drink in the Aegean Islands, you should know that the gastronomy of this area is rich in flavors and culinary traditions, and is an important part of the islands' culture. Local dishes are influenced by the Mediterranean diet, which is characterized by the use of fresh and healthy ingredients such as olive oil, fish, vegetables and aromatic herbs.

Among the most outstanding dishes of Aegean gastronomy is the famous Greek dish known as moussaka. This delicious preparation is made with layers of eggplant, minced meat and a creamy béchamel sauce. Another popular dish in the Aegean is dolmades, which are vine leaves stuffed with a mixture of rice, onion and aromatic herbs.

As for fish dishes, the Aegean is famous for its shrimp saganaki, which are fried shrimp in a tomato and feta cheese sauce. Also popular is "stuffed squid", which is made with squid stuffed with rice, onion and aromatic herbs.

Moreover, fresh and tasty salads stand out here, such as horiatiki, which is a classic Greek salad with tomato, cucumber, onion, olives and feta cheese. Another popular dish is taramosalata, which is a paste made of fish roe, olive oil and lemon juice.

As for desserts, you can find a wide variety of options, such as the famous baklava, which is a puff pastry filled with walnuts and dipped in honey. Also popular is galaktoboureko, which is a cake made with pastry cream and filo dough.

In a few words, Aegean gastronomy is a delicious blend of Mediterranean flavors and Greek culinary traditions. From meat and fish dishes to fresh salads and sweet desserts, there is something for everyone. If you visit the islands, don't miss the opportunity to try some of these typical dishes and experience the unique culinary culture of the region.

How to Get to the Aegean Islands

The Aegean islands are accessible by ferry from the port of Piraeus in Athens, as well as from other nearby islands. There are also airports in Mykonos, Santorini, Naxos, Paros and Crete, which offer direct flights from some European cities.

Getting to the Aegean Islands from Athens

One of the most popular options is to visit the Aegean Islands by ferry. There are several ferry companies that operate from the Port of Piraeus in Athens and offer routes to the different Aegean islands. Travel time varies depending on the island you are going to, but generally ranges from 2 to 6 hours.

Another option is to visit the Aegean Islands by plane. The closest airport to Athens is Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport, from where you can take flights to the main Aegean islands such as Santorini, Mykonos, and Crete.

Where to Stay in the Aegean Islands

There are a wide variety of accommodation options in the Aegean Islands, from luxury hotels to hostels and apartments. If you're looking for a more authentic experience, consider staying in a traditional villa or apartment in one of the island's quaint villages.

Conclusion

In summary, the Aegean islands are a dream destination for those looking to enjoy the sun, sea and Greek culture. From the vibrant nightlife of Mykonos to the breathtaking sights of Santorini and the tranquility of Naxos, each of these islands offers something unique and special for visitors.

We hope this travel guide has inspired you to plan your next adventure to these Greek islands. Don't forget to sample the delicious local food, enjoy the beaches and explore the rich cultural traditions of each island.

Also remember to respect the environment and follow local rules to preserve these beautiful destinations for future generations.

Other Featured Destinations

If you are looking for more detailed information about other destinations in Greece, be sure to visit the Travel Guides section of our blog. There you will find comprehensive guides on destinations such as Athens, Crete, Santorini, and many other Aegean islands. Each travel guide offers useful information on how to get to each destination, what to see and do, where to stay and where to eat. You will also be able to access recommendations on activities and excursions in each destination.

In addition, if you have specific questions about a destination or need help planning your trip, the Greca team will be happy to assist you. You can contact them through the website or by phone for personalized assistance. Feel free to check out the travel guides on the Greca Travel blog for inspiration for your next trip to Greece.
Have a good trip!

01
What are the most popular tourist attractions in the Aegean Islands?

Popular tourist attractions in the Aegean Islands include the Red Beach in Santorini, the Palace of Knossos in Crete, the Medieval Town of Rhodes and the Monastery of Panagia Ekatontapyliani in Paros.

02
How much time should I spend in the Aegean Islands?

The recommended time to spend in the Aegean Islands depends on your personal preferences and how many islands you want to visit. If you only plan to visit one or two islands, one week may be enough. However, if you plan to visit several islands, it is recommended to spend at least two weeks to have enough time to explore and enjoy each island.

03
How can I plan an itinerary to visit several Aegean Islands?

To plan an itinerary to visit several Aegean Islands, it is important to research and decide which islands you want to visit and how much time you want to spend on each one. You can use a travel website to search for flights and ferries between the islands, and book accommodation in advance.

04
What are the best places to eat in the Aegean Islands?

The Aegean Islands are known for their delicious cuisine, with dishes such as moussaka, souvlaki and tzatziki. Some of the best places to eat in the Aegean Islands include Ta Kavourakia in Santorini, Hippie Fish in Mykonos, Peskesi in Crete, Scirocco in Naxos and Sirocco in Paros.

05
What are the best beaches in the Aegean Islands?

Some of the best beaches in the Aegean Islands include Red Beach in Santorini, Elafonisi Beach in Crete, Agios Prokopios Beach in Naxos, Kolymbithres Beach in Paros, and Tsambika Beach in Rhodes. Each island has numerous stunning beaches, so there are plenty of options to choose from.

06
When is the best time to visit the Aegean Islands?

The best time to visit the Aegean Islands is in spring (April to June) and autumn (September to November), when the weather is warm and pleasant, but not too hot. July and August are the busiest and hottest months, and are best avoided if you prefer to avoid crowds and high temperatures.

07
Which are the best Aegean Islands to visit?

The best Aegean Islands to visit depend on your personal preferences. Some of the most popular islands include Santorini, Mykonos, Crete, Naxos, Paros, and Rhodes. Each island has its own beauty and charm, so it is important to research and choose the one that best suits your interests.

08
Do I need a visa to visit the Aegean Islands if I am from another country?

It depends on your country of origin and the length of your stay in the Aegean Islands. If you are a citizen of the EU, USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand, you do not need a visa for stays of up to 90 days. However, if you are a citizen of another country, you may need a visa. We recommend that you check with your nearest Greek embassy or consulate for up-to-date information on visa requirements.

09
Do I need travel insurance to visit the Aegean Islands?

Travel insurance is not required to visit the Aegean islands, but it is highly recommended. Travel insurance can cover medical costs, lost luggage, trip cancellation and other unforeseen events that may occur during your stay on the islands. Be sure to carefully review the terms and conditions of your insurance policy before you travel to make sure it covers everything you need.

10
What to wear in the Aegean islands in summer

During the summer months, temperatures in the Aegean islands are usually very hot, so it is advisable to wear light and breathable clothing, such as T-shirts, dresses, shorts and sandals. It is also advisable to bring a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun. However, you may need to bring warmer clothing for cooler nights, especially if you plan to visit the northernmost islands.

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